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Badri Narayan View Artworks of Badri Narayan Back to Artist

A painter, writer, storyteller and art teacher, the great artist Badri Naryan’s art was an extension of the multi-faceted canvas of his persona. A pioneer of sorts in evolving a distinct discursive methodology for his works, Badri Narayan would always be remembered as an artist who has interpreted ancient and medieval traditions through his paintings, illustrations, stories and workshops.

Badri Narayan was born in July 1929 in Secunderabad, Andhra Pradesh. A self taught artist, he  painted for over 45 years. His distinctive pictorial vocabulary draws from medieval woodcuts, Byzantine portraiture, Ajanta murals and Pahari miniatures. Working in a space between the literary and the visual, the artist’s primary vehicle remains the narrative. Many of his pictorial protagonists, allegories and situations stem from the realm of Indic myths and folklore.

Badri Narayan’s work has also been featured in several group shows, the most recent ones being 'The Root of Everything' at Gallery Mementos, Bangalore, in 2009; ‘Different Strokes’ presented by Tulika Arts at Jehangir Art Gallery, Mumbai, in 2007-08; ‘Journey 2’ at Gallery Art and Soul, Mumbai, in 2007; and ‘Spectra’ at Gallerie Zen, Bangalore, in 2007. He has also participated in the Bharat Bhavan Biennale, Bhopal, in 1992; the 7th Indian Triennale, New Delhi, in 1991’ the 1st and 2nd International Triennales, New Delhi, in 1968 and 1971 respectively; the 5th International Biennale of Prints, Tokyo, in 1966-67; and the 2nd International Biennale, Paris, in 1961.

A prolific writer, he has written on art, folklore, mythology; short stories, verse and tales for children, and illustrated books. He was awarded the Padma Shri in 1987 and the Maharashtra Gaurav Puruskar in 1990.

Badri Narayan passed away in September, 2013.







Selected Solo Exhibitions

2012 The Viewing Room, Mumbai

2007-08 Mon Art Gallerie, Kolkata

2006 Pundole Art Gallery, Mumbai

2004 Pundole Art Gallery, Mumbai

2002 Pundole Art Gallery, Mumbai

2002 Gallerie 88, Kolkata

1999 Pundole Art Gallery, Mumbai

1993 Pundole Art Gallery, Mumbai

1991 Sakshi Gallery, Bangalore

1985-86 University of North Dakota, USA

1964 Jehangir Art Gallery, Mumbai

1963 Jehangir Art Gallery, Mumbai

Selected Group Exhibitions


2012 'Aqua', Gallery Beyond, Mumbai

2010 'Black is Beautiful', India Fine Art, Mumbai

2009 'Sacred and Secular', India Fine Art, Mumbai

2009 'The Root of Everything', Gallery Mementos, Bangalore

2007-08 ‘Different Strokes’, presented by Tulika Arts at Jehangir Art Gallery, Mumbai

2007 ‘Journey 2’, A Charity Art Show for Passages, Gallery Art and Soul, Mumbai

2007 ‘Art for Concern’, The Annual Charity Auction 2007, Mumbai

2007 ‘Spectra’, Gallerie Zen, Bangalore

2002 ‘Legacy of Art’, Commemorating 50 Years of Jehangir Art Gallery, Jehangir Art Gallery, Mumbai

1998 ’50 Years of Art in Mumbai’, National Gallery of Modern Art (NGMA), Mumbai

1998 Jehangir Nicholsan Collection, National Gallery of Modern Art (NGMA), Mumbai, New Delhi

1997 ‘Image Beyond Image’, Traveling Exhibition form Glenbarra Museum, Japan

1997 ‘Japan Collection’, New Delhi, Kolkata, Bangalore, Mumbai

1996 ‘Perspecta’, organized by Gallery 88 at Hotel Oberoi, New Delhi

1996 ‘Contemporary Indian Painters’, Jehangir Art Gallery, Mumbai

1990 Work of the Indo- German Artists’ Camp on War and Peace, Max Mueller Bhavan, Kolkata

1988 ‘Art for CRY’, Mumbai, Kolkata, New Delhi, Bangalore

1985 ‘Collector’s Choice’, Gallery Chemould, Mumbai

1982 ‘Indian Art Today’, Darmstadt

1980 ‘Four Indian Artists’, Surya Galleries, Freinsheim

1979-80 ‘Indian Art of the Present Day’, Landau

1972-73 ‘Indian Graphic Art’, Warsaw and Paris

1972 ’25 Years of Indian Art’, New Delhi

1971-72 ‘Indian Art Exhibition’, Tokyo, Kyoto, Sao Paulo, Rio de Janeiro, San Salvador

1966 75 Years of Painting in Western India, Mumbai

1966 The First Bombay Arts Festival, Mumbai

1966 ‘Art Now in India’, Newcastle, Ghent

1965-66 Traveling Exhibition of Contemporary Indian Art, East Africa, Nairobi, Kampala, Dar es Salaam

1965 ‘Graphic Arts from Five Continents’, Leipzig

1964 ‘International Graphic Arts’, National Museum, Prague

1963 Vitrum Studio Exhibition, Galerie Vanier, Geneva

1963 Air India Art Exhibition, Perth

1962 Indian Artists Exhibition, Moscow

1960 Exhibition of Indian Art, Villa Huegel, Essen

1957 First Asian Artists’ Exhibition, Tokyo

1955 Indian Art Exhibition, Rumania, Bulgaria, Hungary and Czechoslovakia

1949 All India Art Exhibition, Hyderabad Art Society, Hyderabad



2012 'Small is Beautiful', Tao Art Gallery, Mumbai

2012 'Art for Humanity', Coomaraswamy Hall, Chhatrapati Shivaji Maharaj Vastu Sangrahalaya, Mumbai

2011 ‘Manifestations V', Delhi Art Gallery, New Delhi

2008 'Moderns', Royal Cultural Centre, Amman, Jordan organized by Lalit Kala Akademi, New Delhi in collaboration with Embassy of India, Amman, Jordan

1992 Bharat Bhavan Biennale, Bhopal

1991 7th Indian Triennale, New Delhi

1989 Centenary Exhibition, Bombay Art Society, Mumbai

1987 ‘Indian Art Exhibition’, Festival of India, Moscow

1976 ‘Contemporary Indian Art’, 25th Pugwash Conference, Chennai

1971 2nd International Triennale, New Delhi

1968 Golden Jubilee Exhibition, Art Society of India, Mumbai

1968 1st International Triennale, New Delhi

1966-67 5th International Biennale of Prints, Tokyo

1961 2nd International Biennale, Paris


Honours and Awards


1990-91 Gaurav Puraskar, Maharashtra State Government

1987 Padma Shri, Government of India

1984-86 Senior Fellowship for Outstanding Artists, Government of India, New Delhi

1968-69 ‘The Critics’ Award’, Artists’ Centre, Mumbai

1965 National Award, Lalit Kala Akademi, New Delhi

1962,65,66,67,69,70 Andhra Pradesh Lalit Kala Academy, Hyderabad

1962,63,66 All India Fine Arts and Crafts Society (AIFACS), New Delhi

1957,58,59,70 Bombay Art Society, Mumbai

1949,54,60,62 Gold Medal, Hyderabad Art Society, Hyderabad

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